Studies have shown that women dress more to impress other women than they do to attract men. And this notion translates to the food realm as well. Not to cast aspersions on male refinement, but when the average group of guys gets together, as likely as not they’re eating some form of takeout and they’re lucky if they AREN’T using toilet paper as napkins. But when groups of women gather without men, as in the three B’s – Brunch, Baby and Bridal showers, things like napkin color and choice of food seem to matter. Quiche is a particularly popular dish for ladies only events, and the likelihood of it appearing is in direct proportion to the number of B’s involved. Hence, one B yields a 1-in-3 chance of quiche, 2 B’s, 2-in-3, and in the rare instance of a Bridal/Baby shower Brunch – well you are positively guaranteed to see quiche on the menu. Why is this?! My hypothesis is that women, in food as in fashion, feel the need to impress and quiche (especially this healthy low sodium version) is one tasty and impressive dish. (Though between you and me, it’s as easy as pie).
SODIUM CONTENT: 76.5 mg per serving
1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour
4 T. unsalted butter
2 T. vegetable shortening
3 T. cold water
2 T. olive oil
3/4 c. diced onion (1 small onion)
2 c. thinly sliced mushrooms (your choice)
2 c. half and half
1/2 t. freshly ground black pepper
1/4 t. dried herb de Provence
1/8 t. ground nutmeg
1/2 c. shredded Swiss cheese (check sodium content carefully to ensure lowest possible)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
To make the crust, measure flour, butter and shortening into a mixing bowl. Cut the butter and shortening into the flour using your fingertips. Continue processing until a soft crumb is achieved. Add the water, one tablespoon at a time, working the liquid into the mixture with your hands. Finally, gather up the dough, squeezing it together to form a compact ball. Lightly flour a clean surface and gently roll the dough into a 1/4-1/8-inch thick circle. Carefully move the dough to the pan, pressing into place. Trim off any excess dough around the edges with a sharp knife. Prick the crust all over with the tines of a fork to release steam. Place pan on the middle rack in oven and bake for 10 minutes. Remove and set aside.
Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees. Heat oil in a saute pan over medium-high. Add onion and mushrooms and cook, stirring, 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Break the eggs into a large mixing bowl and beat well. Add the half and half and seasoning and mix. Add the onion-mushroom mixture and the cheese and stir. Place the crust onto a baking sheet (to catch any spillage), then pour the filling into the crust. Place the pan on the middle rack in oven and bake 55 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.